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Implementation of OGP Commitments – Request for Expressions of Interest

Request for Expressions of Interest to Support Implementation of OGP Commitments

Deadline for Submission: April 22, 2019

This is a guideline for members of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) to apply to the OGP Multi Donor Trust Fund (MDTF) managed by the World Bank for funding to implement OGP commitments. Applicants are encouraged to read this document in entirety before submitting an Expression of Interest (EOI).

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Objectives

One of the objectives of the OGP MDTF is to support activities that help to bridge and address implementation gaps of potentially ambitious OGP commitments. Going beyond the traditional technical solutions, the OGP MDTF seeks to support Recipient Executed (RE) and Bank Executed (BE) activities that address contextual, technical and financial challenges inherent in implementing complex open government reforms. It will help government leaders and civil society stakeholders to identify and prioritize problems, invest in resilient coalitions, find the right solutions, and build capacity to overcome obstacles and achieve results, and can potentially be scaled up through larger government and nongovernment actions.

Background

Through OGP Action Plans, national and local governments in consultation with civil society make commitments to implement open government reforms. They include, for example, improving public service delivery; strengthening accountability by institutionalizing open government approaches; enhancing citizen engagement through feedback mechanisms; and administrative simplification to access to information to expand citizens’ trust in government. Assessments by the Independent Reporting Mechanism (IRM), the accountability arm of OGP, shows that roughly 20 percent of commitments are completed. Completion levels are for ‘potentially transformative’ commitments – commitments which could change the status quo and culture of government towards greater openness, responsiveness and more public engagement and scrutiny. The implementation of these commitments is often hindered by a combination of collective action problems and policy capture, lack of funding and technical capacity.  It is in this context that the OGP MDTF seeks to support the successful implementation of open governance reforms in OGP countries in line with their development agenda. Applications selected by the OGP MDTF will include a package of interventions (please see section below on Package of Activities) that bridge the technical implementation gap and address the adaptive challenges that require real-time adjustments.[1]

Countries and Locals Eligible in early 2019

Eligible recipients for the first round of the OGP MDTF implementation support are: (i) countries that submitted an Action Plan in 2016 or 2017 or locals that submitted an Action Plan in 2016;

(ii) have a multi-stakeholder forum; and (iii) are countries where the World Bank work and provide lending. They are:

  1. Afghanistan
  2. Argentina
  3. Buenos Aires, Argentina
  4. Burkina Faso
  5. Colombia
  6. Costa Rica
  7. Ghana
  8. Elgeyo-Marakwet County, Kenya
  9. Jalisco, Mexico
  10. La Libertad, Peru
  11. Liberia
  12. Mongolia
  13. Nigeria
  14. Panama
  15. Philippines
  16. São Paulo, Brazil
  17. Sekondi-Takoradi, Ghana
  18. Sierra Leone
  19. Sri Lanka
  20. Tbilisi, Georgia

Please note:

  • In late 2019, the OGP MDTF will open a request for EOIs for countries and locals that submitted a 2018-2010 Action Plan and have a recognized and credible MSF.
  • A country or local is expected to submit only one EOI for one commitment area that is included in their current Action Plan.

Selection Criteria

Suggested activities as described in the Expressions of Interest are assessed based on the following selection criteria:

  • An ambitious commitment: The proposed open government commitment is (i) a major step forward in the relevant policy area and could potentially transform ‘business as usual’ in that area and (ii) faces clear political-economy, technical and financial challenges in implementation
  • Sustainability: The commitment should be selected from a country’s 2017-19 action plan/ locals’ 2017 action plan and the continuation of its activities must be included as part of the country/locals next action plan.
  • A regular and fully functioning OGP multi-stakeholder forum (MSF): The MSF, and the implementing agency of the commitment (if different from the OGP host agency) must submit a letter of endorsement attesting to the potentially transformative nature of the commitment and challenges with implementation. The MSF must meet at at least quarterly to assess implementation during the duration of the award.
    • If selected, a review may be needed by the Project Team to enhance the composition, structure, and capacity of the MSF to take on this function effectively.
  • Inclusion: The selected commitment demonstrates how activities will promote gender equality, inclusiveness and enhance participation by marginalized groups, women’s organizations and organizations representing vulnerable communities local/grassroots actors.
  • Favorable authorizing environment: There should be sufficient commitment from the country/local leadership and implementing government agencies.
  • Demonstrate a need for supplemental funding from the OGP MDTF:
    • The suggested activities do not overlap with existing, available resources.
    • The suggested activities can further complement or leverage existing, available resources from the state budget and from other donors.
    • There is commitment of co-funding from the government, if applicable.
  • A clear alignment of the open government reform with the country’s development agenda.
  • Align with the OGP values and principles (as expressed in the Open Government Declaration and in the Articles of Governance) and the Strategic Refresh.
  • Be consistent with World Bank country strategy, particularly the Country Partnership Framework and the work program of the Governance Global Practice, including on anticorruption as endorsed by the World Bank Country Office.

Diagram 1 – The Selection Process is distinguished by two main phases: Pre-Endorsement and Post-Endorsement.

Selection Processes

The World Bank along with the OGP Support Unit will coordinate the selection process, which consists of the following steps:

Pre-Endorsement Phase

1. Notification of Intent to Submit Expression of Interest (EOI)

Prior to Submission of EOI, eligible countries will send a brief email to the OGP MDTF (Aichida Ul-Aflaha at aulaflaha@worldbank.org and the OGP Country Support lead) to notify us of your intent to submit an EOI. The email will serve as advance notification on: (i) the potentially transformative open government reform area facing implementation challenges, and (ii) to help connect applicants with the respective staff from the World Bank to provide advice and answer any questions.

  • Sample Email:
    • Dear OGP MDTF Team,

We are writing to inform you that [Insert Country] would like to submit an Expression of Interest to apply for funding from the OGP MDTF to support implementation of our OGP commitment in [Insert OGP commitment or an open government reform area]. We look forward to hearing from you.

Regards,

[Insert Name, Title, Agency]

  • This notification email will prompt the OGP MDTF Team to work with Implementing Agency and OGP POC to seek endorsement from the World Bank Country Office.
  • The World Bank highly recommends interested applicants to reach out to the OGP MDTF to discuss potential areas for collaboration and to connect with a World Bank Specialist who can provide advice prior on the EOI.
  • The Government Agency responsible for the implementation of the commitment, or the Implementing Agency, OGP Point of Contact (POC) and the MSF will deliberate and jointly determine the one commitment, or the one open government reform objective included in the OGP Action Plan that is facing implementation challenges and would benefit from additional technical and financial resources from the OGP MDTF.

2. Submission of Expression of Interest (EOI) – The OGP lead agency will submit an EOI that clearly articulates the OGP commitment facing implementation challenges and the value add of the technical and financial support from the OGP MDTF. Submission of EOI packet will include:

  1. Completed EOI Form. Download the EOI Form here.
  2. A letter signed by a high-level official of the agency implementing the reform (if different from the OGP host agency) stating their commitment to carry out the project.
  3. A letter from minister of OGP lead agency (POC) stating their commitment to (i) include the commitment in the next Action Plan(s) to ensure sustained monitoring by the IRM.
  4. A letter from the MSF supporting the submission of the EOI.

Please submit this EOI Form to Aichida Ul-Aflaha (aulaflaha@worldbank.org)

Review and Endorsement Phase

3. Preliminary Review

EOIs are initially reviewed by the OGP MDTF Team to assess (i) their adherence to the selection criteria, (ii) feasibility based on the contextual challenges and opportunity for the OGP MDTF resources to generate impact in the reform area, and (iii) relevance to the country’s open government agenda. The Team will provide recommendations to the OGP MDTF Council.

4. MDTF Council Endorsement

The OGP MDTF Council considers the recommendations by the World Bank and the Support Unit, and the Council conditionally endorses the EOIs subject to organizational assessment and fiduciary checks by the World Bank.

5. Post-Endorsement Phase

Project Preparation  

The Project Team, composed of the Implementing Agency and the World Bank Task Team Leader (TTL) and a designated team, will be established. The Project Team will:

  • Work in collaboration with the OGP POC, MSF and stakeholders in the country and the OGP MDTF Administrative Unit at the World Bank and the OGP Support Unit conduct a thorough problem identification, fine tune the reform objectives, enhance the quality of proposed outcomes, and jointly determine the package of activities and their respective implementation mechanisms.
  • The World Bank TTL will work with the Financial Management and Procurement Specialists to conduct the fiduciary checks.

6. Publication of Selected Grantees

OGP Support Unit publishes the list of selected countries that meet the fiduciary checks on the OGP MDTF website.

7. Project Paper and Grant Agreements

The TTL prepares the Project Paper in accordance to the World Bank policies and procedures for Small Recipient-Executed Grants. Subsequently, a Grant Agreement is prepared for signature.

Implementation Phase

8. Execution of Agreements – The World Bank works with the Implementing Agency to complete the necessary steps for a grant agreement to perform the agreed upon activities.

Amount

The size of the award for the total package of activities can range from USD 150,000 to 400,000 over two to four years. The activities may run the course of two Action Plan cycles.

Package of Activities

The support to implementation of selected OGP commitment will consist of a package of recipient-executed and bank-executed activities that must address a combination of all the following elements, which will be detailed during the Post-Endorsement phase (please see more in the Selection Process below):

  • Technical implementation gap through well-designed policy interventions.
  • Adaptive implementation gap (related to behaviors – societal, institutional, individual) through a well-developed analysis and engagement strategy.
  • Institutionalization of open government approaches and mechanisms that sustain transparency, accountability, participation and government responsiveness.
  • Coalition building of government and civil society stakeholders to coordinate, collaborate and effectively problem solve.
  • Capacity building to enhance knowledge and skills of leadership teams, and to sustain transfer of knowledge.
  • Knowledge generation, exchange and dissemination.
  • Monitoring and supervision.
  • These elements and the proposed projects’ components and activities must be designed to ensure relevance to the project development objectives.

Implementation Mechanism

The package of activities may be designed and supported through a combination of recipient- and Bank-executed implementation mechanisms which offer complementary value-add to achieving the overall objective of the open governance reform. The Project Team will discuss with the OGP MDTF Team and determine which implementation mechanism is most appropriate in delivering the results of the reform objective during project preparation, with consideration given to ability and flexibility of delivering complementary activities and the fiduciary capacity of the Implementing Agency. The financing mechanisms are:

  • Recipient-Executed (RE) Grants directly to a government agency implementing a potentially transformative open government reform. The grant can support piloting of new initiatives or strengthening ongoing or pipeline activities that are included in the country’s OGP Action Plan and are in line with the government’s development agenda.
  • Bank-Executed (BE) Technical Assistance (TA) carefully calibrated to help implementing agency and supporting government agencies and civil society stakeholders achieve the results of RE component. The TA, for example, may include a combination of activities that address the different elements of the project package:
    • Capacity building to help governments implement activities to strengthen their capacities on specific policy reform.
    • Staff training to build on coordination mechanisms and broaden the coalition at both at the level of the implementing agency(ies) and at the level of political leadership.
    • Consulting services to support key technical interventions that lay the basis for enhanced effectiveness.
    • Procurement only to the extent necessary for the achievement of the targeted objectives under the RE component.
    • Monitoring and supervision of implementation of RE and BE components.

The TA funds will be managed by the Bank staff that serve as the Task Team Leader (TTL) of the RE activity to provide some flexibility to address the adaptive challenges – for example by recruiting consultants to facilitate coalition building workshops or to build technical capacity.

Expression of Interest Form

To learn more, join our webinar:

Information Session 1 – Support to the Implementation of OGP Commitments (English)
Wednesday, January 30, 2019 at 11:00PM – 12:30AM EST
Watch »

Information Session 2 – Support to the Implementation of OGP Commitments (English)
Thursday, January 31, 2019 at 9:00 – 10:30AM EST
Watch »
(Note: This webinar concluded within 45 minutes. Although the recording continues on, please be advised that nothing else is said after these first 45 minutes.)

See an overview »


[1] Adaptive challenges imply real-time adjustments that are needed to respond to challenges and opportunities on the ground as they come up, which often are a feature of multi-stakeholder co-creation and implementation of open government reform. This goes beyond the provisioning of traditional technical assistance and draws up on “softer” tools – including behavioral aspects of individuals, organizations, and institution – to support multi-stakeholder coalitions working on reforms on the ground.